Next year, fans will get a better look at Warner Bros.' sprawling DC Comics cinematic universe with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. That superhero adventure will spawn a slew of new movies, some of which feature characters that are already established on the small screen. Unlike the Marvel Cinematic Universe, where all of the studio's movies and TV shows are set in the same universe, DC Comics isn't connecting its movies to its TV side. While speaking at Variety's Technology and Entertainment Summit in Beverly Hills earlier today, DC Entertainment president Diane Nelson clarified why they went with separate universes for film and TV.
"[The focus on a single universe of characters with connected storylines] could end up handcuffing our creators into trying to work with the same storyline or force them to hold back characters or introduce certain characters. Ultimately it hinders the ability for someone like (showrunner) Bruno Heller to come in and create Gotham."
Oddly enough, Marvel's The Avengers and Avengers: Age of Ultron director Joss Whedon actually agrees with this contention. The filmmaker revealed in an interview this April that the TV shows "complicate" the MCU even further, since story threads from Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. often line up with and connect to the MCU movies. Along with directing both Avengers movies, he also co-created ABC's Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., which starts its third season later this month.
Diane Nelson added there are no creative constraints whatsoever between Gotham and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, precisely because they both exist in separate universes. Warner Bros. is also developing a feature version of The Flash, starring Ezra Miller as Barry Allen, while The CW is getting ready to debut Season 2 of The Flash, starring Grant Gustin as Barry Allen. All of The CW shows such as The Flash, Arrow and DC's Legends of Tomorrow all exist in the same universe, but Fox's Gotham and Supergirl are in their own worlds.
It's worth also noting that Marvel is own by Disney, which also owns ABC, which creates one cohesive home for all of these properties. DC's movie adaptations are all at Warner Bros., but their TV shows are spread out through too many different networks to make a cohesive universe work. Do you think DC's approach to their movies and TV shows makes sense? Or would you like to see them try to pull off a shared universe?